Spring modalities: Proportion of in-person classes to double this spring

Percent of scheduled online classes remains roughly the same, two-thirds of all classes will be taught online in some capacity

By Benjy Renton

In preparation for the spring semester, Middlebury has released a breakdown of its course modalities in a Nov. 3 email from Dean of Curriculum Suzanne Gurland.

Based on a Campus analysis of the document outlining initial teaching plans for the semester, 241 of the 518 courses — or 48% — will be offered completely in either “scheduled online” or “flexible online” modalities, with no in-person components at all. Meanwhile, 67% of all classes will be taught online in some capacity. 

Compared to this fall semester, the proportion of classes that will be completely in-person has more than doubled — 13% of courses were completely in-person this fall, compared to the projected 26% in the spring. The proportion of classes in-person increased due to cutting the proportion of “flexible” online courses in half and decreasing the number of “blended” courses.

130 of the 518 courses — 25% — include a discussion, lab, drill or screening session alongside the lecture component. The Campus found that 33% of discussions, 36% of labs, 43% of drills and 29% of screenings will be held in-person. Some courses that have in-person discussions or labs also include another “scheduled online” section.


Out of the 51 departments listed in the course catalog, seven — 14% — will hold the lecture portions of their courses exclusively in “scheduled online” or “flexible online” modalities. This fall semester, that figure was much larger at 17 — more than a third of all departments.

Registration for spring courses begins Wednesday, January 27.